Diabetic does dairy no more

By Whitney Sharp

Okay, sort of. While I haven’t gone completely non-dairy (it’s a goal of mine), I have definitely cut back and I’ve eliminated cow’s milk from my diet.

Why, you ask?

Well, for one, I know I was consuming far too much dairy in general. While it’s a rich source of minerals such as calcium, it’s not the only source. And often times, it’s not even the best source.

Non-dairy alternatives such as soy, coconut, almond and cashew milk all have respectable levels of vitamins and minerals. Not to mention, a healthy balanced diet full of fruits, veggies, carbs and proteins will help you keep on track.

From a diabetic perspective, eliminating cow’s milk has been a great decision. Just look at the numbers:

  • 1 cup (250 ml) of 1% cow’s milk contains 100 calories and 13 g of carbs. The source of those carbs? Sugar. It’s a common thing that many people forget. Cow’s milk contains lactose — a naturally occurring sugar found in dairy. For a diabetic, that means “pay attention.” A nice cold glass of cow’s milk already has enough carbs in it to qualify as a snack. Not very satisfying or satiating.
  • 1 cup (250 ml) of unsweetened vanilla almond milk is 45 calories and 3 g of carbs. This cup will provide 30% of your daily recommended calcium. While there is some sugar, it’s a drastically lower amount. That means it’s the friendlier choice for anyone watching their waist line or their blood glucose. Besides, it’s a nice treat in a cup of tea.

Still not sure if you can make the move to give up the moo-juice? Cows have a typical lifespan of approximately 20 years. But cows in the dairy industry are usually killed much sooner (some estimates say dairy cows may be killed as early as five years old).

The reason is the extreme stress placed on their bodies from continued pregnancy and milk production — milk, for human consumption.

We all know the saying Oreo is milk’s favourite cookie. But no one ever said it had to be cow’s milk.

NOTE: calorie counts and nutritional information vary slightly from brand to brand. Always read the label for the most accurate information. The
numbers I mentioned came directly off the labels of particular brands of dairy and almond milk.

Photo credit: FreeImages/PawelTomkiewicz

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